Monday, April 13, 2015

REPRESENTATION Curtisland - Monkey Dust cartoon

NB: Whilst animated, this does contain some fairly adult humour

Often mentioned, this animation sharply satirises some of the widely perceived issues with Richard Curtis' Working Title productions (it extends to Red Nose/Comic Relief Day, which RC also came up with).

Glamorous (A-list/star) American (bimbo; RC's female representation is also questioned) + English middle-/upper-class fop; a black youth runs in the background...

...from the police. Curtis is accused of representing a very whitewashed Britain, most notoroiously in Notting Hill

As in that film, we get the good old white stallholder...


Having shown off the produce 'fresh from the Soho Dales' (such Americanised nonsense was seen in Theory of Everything, when a US detergent, Tidal, was used to avoid confusing a US audience!), the stallholder wonders, "'ere, how'd 'e get in 'ere" - and is satisfied to see a truncheon attack the Asian character
The twee-ness of the London seen in the likes of BJD (she can run out of her central london flat in her knickers, leave the door open, share a joke with a charming tramp, and enjoy the snow, as that helps bring up a Quality Street ad-style fantasy feelgood feeling) is a recurrent feature
The Grant character points out that the "immigrants and poor people" are moved on... He could have added that the Midlands and Northern English plus Celts are either absent or used primarily for heavily stereotyped comedy purposes
Wee bit of a contrast from, oh, Tyrannosaur or Shaun's house in This is England!!!
Again, compare with the poverty-stricken mise-en-scene of the opening of TisEng, the peeling wallpaper, tiny room, lack of furniture...
A cynical take on stars' 'contributions' to Comic Relief
None of this ambiguous, downbeat, open ending that we get from the likes of '71, TisEng, Tyrannosaur ... clear-cut, anchored, closed feelgood endings all round please!

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